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Monday, January 17, 2011

Indiana Jones and the Strip Mall Bar, Part 1

So my friend and colleague (I'll call him "Indiana") is not only a hilarious genius in his chosen field, but also a rock star who plays a pretty mean guitar.  He has invited me to see his band play as often as I've probably invited him to come see me dance, but neither of us has been able to sync our schedules.  
And then last week, it happened: he was playing on a night that I wasn't dancing.  After thinking about it all day, I figured, this opportunity probably won't occur again anytime soon, so I'm going for it.
This suspect shape is not the actual marquee

I googled the name of the bar to get the address.  The name had the word "lounge" in it which made me think of a hotel night club, but the exterior picture revealed a bar with a marquee shaped like the kind that cheap motels use complete with a martini on it.  I had dressed in basic club wear, but after considering the photo I decided to change into jeans.

Gold Glitter Platform Shoes: not appropriate

I really wanted to wear the red motorcycle jacket but felt that was too much commitment to the strip mall bar genre.

Getting on the 680 freeway
, I discovered that the famous San Francisco fog had crept over the mountains so I could play a night game of Hide and Seek with the pavement.

My GPS faithfully guided me through the streets until I pulled into the lounge parking lot.

My first impression was that my first impression (on the web) was correct.  I was thrilled!  I had never been to a dive before and this was my first one!  I opened the door and just like in the movies, all the men hunkered down on stools at the bar turned to look at me.  I stood in the doorway for a moment trying to figure out what I was supposed to do.  I figured a regular bar lady person would walk right up to the bar and order something.  So I calmly walked to the end of the bar and leaned against it, smiling at the other customers.  I looked over at the bartender, but he only glanced at me in that professional bartender way that probably dismissing instantly as a club soda kinda gal.  So I turned around to face the band; Indiana spotted me, smiled and waved.  I leaned on the bar trying to project Karen Allen from the first Indy movie.

The man to my right leaned in close, and with beery breath he mumbled,"Wahlla Whalla monka wonka yu weer."  I thought, Oh my gosh, this is a real drunken barfly just like in the movies!  So I smiled and replied, "I cannot hear you" (which was true because the band was so loud my eyes had trouble focusing together.)  My barfly proceeded to tell me a long boozy story that was completely unintelligible, and finished with an entertaining disco dance for me.  I certainly could not fault him for his sociability.  I finally gleaned from my barfly's ramblings that he used to be a farmer (or still was - I'm not sure.)

He then said, "Bartender! I'm buying for her" in perfectly clear and audible tones.  The bartender brought over a club soda with lime.  We looked at each other for a moment before I grinned, acknowledging his professional assessment of my drink preference for this evening.

Suddenly, Friendly Farmer grabbed my arm and whispered hoarsely, "Watch out for that guy!"  He waved a finger at a tall, muscular man wearing a beret who had appeared at my left side.  I looked up to find Major Toht (from the first Indy movie) staring intently at me.
And I thought, What now?

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